Grudge (starring Sarah Michelle Geller)
Is the grudge a scary film? not really, the scariest thing in The
Grudge is a tiny Japanese child. this is more scary than a tiny English
child, but really, what could a little child do against a fully grown
Sarah Michelle Gellar? even a supernatural one. there is also a ghostly
woman in the film but the worst thing she does to anyone is make them
strangely disappear. if you are scared of disappearing then you might
be frightened watching this film, but otherwise the shocks diminish
as the film progresses.
I have not seen the original Japanese film, but I would imagine it
is very similar but somehow more chilling than this version. In fact,
as the film is set in Japan and uses mostly Japanese characters, I
would say the only difference is substituting Sarah Michelle into
the main role. So, as usual there was no real point in re-making this.
The problem with "haunted house" films
are that a house is not really a very threatening monster. Often
the characters will refer to the "power of the house"
or "that terrible house" but a house is not really a terrifying
concept. The scariest thing you can have in a horror film is a poltergeist
because they are real and can hurt you. I am scared of a poltergeist
but no way am I scared of a house, Japanese or otherwise.
The Grudge suffers from the common problem of most horror films: once
the initial scares has subsided there is no real story to back them
up. Sooner or later they have to show the monster/ghost/alien and
he is rarely as scary as what you imagined. And when the film finally
limps to it's weak clichéd conclusion, nothing has really been
resolved and nothing has really happened.
Mark out of Seven: 4
SEE IT AT CINEMA? don't bother
GET IT ON DVD? you could do worse
WATCH IT ON TV? oh okay then if there's nothing better on